W1GHZ 1296 MHz RX working!

I spent about two hours last night assembling the W1GHZ 1296RSU and 1152LO boards from his paper “Multiband Microwave Transverters for the Rover—Simple and Cheap.”  Once again, I trekked over to W3APL beacon site at lunch and put the pair through their paces on RX with the IC-290H as the IF radio.  It worked!  Here’s a clip:


One of the interesting things about the 1296-MHz beacon is that it’s FSK, not CW.  You’ll notice this after about 15 seconds when it starts sending its callsign.  The higher pitch tone is “keyed” and the lower is “unkeyed.”  Brian, ND3F, was at the beacon site with us last week to check out a problem (turned out to be a dead power supply fan).  He told us that it’s common for microwave beacons to operate in FSK mode so you always have a carrier to tune across (and swing your antenna across).  Who knew?!

Anyhow, it’s time to start building the other trappings, including enclosures, sequencers, filters, PAs, and T/R switches!  Apart from the PA parts and some connectors, the other components are on-hand and ready.

Ethan Miller, K8GU, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from Maryland, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

Leave a Comment

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter
News, Opinion, Giveaways & More!

Join over 7,000 subscribers!
We never share your e-mail address.

Also available via RSS feed, Twitter, and Facebook.

Subscribe FREE to AmateurRadio.com's
Amateur Radio Newsletter

We never share your e-mail address.

Do you like to write?
Interesting project to share?
Helpful tips and ideas for other hams?

Submit an article and we will review it for publication on AmateurRadio.com!

Have a ham radio product or service?
Consider advertising on our site.

Are you a reporter covering ham radio?
Find ham radio experts for your story.

How to Set Up a Ham Radio Blog
Get started in less than 15 minutes!

  • Matt W1MST, Managing Editor

Sign up for our free
Amateur Radio Newsletter

Enter your e-mail address: